Xperia PRO-I US release date gives Sony's camera a time to shine

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Despite and in spite of all odds, Sony's mobile business continues to move forward and, in fact, sometimes registers good figures for the company's finances. It doesn't have a big market share for mobile smart device sales, at least not enough to make it to the world's top ten, but it does spark some interest once in a while with its unique designs or propositions. In addition to that still unique 21:9 display aspect ratio, the Xperia PRO-I continues that tradition by appealing to vloggers and videographers, who won't have to wait long to finally get their hands on one.

As far as core smartphone specs are concerned, the Xperia PRO-I definitely checks all the right boxes. There's the Snapdragon 888 5G processor, 12GB of RAM, and 512GB of storage. That 6.5-inch 4K OLED display supports a 120Hz refresh rate, and that odd aspect ratio that Sony still insists is best for cinematic video consumption and creation. The real claim to fame it wants to make, however, is with the cameras and, specifically, how it promises to improve the video recording experience.

The 12MP main sensor might sound disappointing as far as pixel count goes, but that's definitely selling it short. It's touted to be the first 1.0-inch Exmor RS sensor to make its way to a smartphone, and it's paired with a dedicated BIONZ X image processor to deliver the same image quality that many Sony cameras boast of. It also has a dual-aperture lens with Tessar Optics and T* anti-reflective coating.

Hardware isn't all that there is to quality images and videos, though. Sony is making sure there's an entire ecosystem to support that video-making use case it's pushing. In addition to adding a Videography Pro mode to match the usual Pro Camera mode, the company is also launching accessories that make it easier to use the phone's main camera for making a higher quality video. The most unique is the Vlog Monitor, like we saw with the XPERIA Pro I international launch, that puts a small screen on the back of the phone to be used together with a tripod or monopod.

In typical Sony fashion, the Xperia PRO-I gets a price tag that's higher than its peers. At $1,799.99, the phone isn't an easy purchase, especially when there are more affordable options with equally decent cameras. In the US, the Sony Xperia PRO-I is launching on December 10, with no sign of the Vlog Monitor accessory yet. Like any other Sony phone, you won't find it from carriers or local stores but can be purchased from Amazon, where it's available on pre-order right now.